The sun hasn’t exactly set on Solar Planet, but anxiety over the fate of the Arlington tanning salon has been running high ever since a “tan tax” took effect Thursday.This is beyond stupid. This is just so, incredibly, stupid. In the last paragraph, a tanning salon owner points out how he didn't hire additional workers for the spring season. That's fifteen jobs out the door right there. And more jobs will follow; to avoid paying that tax, people will cut back on tanning, and when the patrons go, people who work in tanning salons are going to lose thier jobs.
One of the less publicized measures in the new health-care law, the tax imposes a 10 percent surcharge on the use of ultraviolet indoor tanning beds.
Supporters — including the Obama administration, congressional Democrats and dermatologists — have argued that the tax will raise an estimated $2.7 billion toward the cost of expanding health coverage to the uninsured, while discouraging a practice that increases the risk of skin cancer by as much as threefold in frequent users, according to scientific research.
But outraged tanning salon owners worry that the levy could deal a death blow to an industry already reeling from the recession.
“In 26 years of business this is the worst I’ve seen it,” said Scott Shortnacy, owner of the Arlington Solar Planet as well as six other branches in the Washington area. “Normally for people who tan, it’s a part of their lifestyle. They keep doing it even in a recession. But everybody has been looking for ways to cut back on those areas. … Our sales are down 20 to 30 percent.”
According to the Indoor Tanning Association, an industry trade group, most of the nation's 19,000 tanning salons are small businesses owned and staffed by women. Shortnacy said all but two of his several dozen employees are women. With business so slow, he opted against hiring the 10 to 15 seasonal workers he normally adds during the spring high season.
So thanks, Democrats. Thanks for killing more jobs that people could have used. Thanks for nothing.